Monday, December 3, 2007

Jayhawks juiced over Orange Bowl bid


Jayhawks Orange Bowl bound

There is no 'Fiesta' for KU, but the Jayhawks are celebrating with a BCS bowl game. The Jayhawks are heading back to the Orange Bowl for the first time since 1969.

KU to square off against Virginia Tech in Orange Bowl

The Kansas Jayhawk football team was rewarded for an 11-1 season by a birth in the Orange Bowl against Virginia Tech.

Reader poll

What do you think will be the most competitive BCS game?

  • Orange Bowl (KU vs. VT) 42% 1573 votes
  • Sugar Bowl (UGA vs. Hawaii) 8% 306 votes
  • Rose Bowl (USC vs. Illinois) 3% 130 votes
  • Fiesta Bowl (OU vs. WV) 26% 984 votes
  • Title Game (LSU vs. tOSU) 19% 727 votes

3720 total votes.

Just before the BCS bowl selections were announced to the country Sunday, Kansas University athletic director Lew Perkins slipped into a room where the Jayhawks' football team was waiting for big news.

Perkins immediately pulled out a bag and started throwing oranges out to all the seniors.

He didn't have to say a word.

"It was like when my kids were knee-high on Christmas morning," KU coach Mark Mangino said. "They were just grinning from ear to ear."

With good reason. The Jayhawks' 11-1 regular season was rewarded in a big way Sunday, when the Orange Bowl invited them to play in its prestigious Jan. 3 game in Miami.

The Jayhawks will play Virginia Tech, which boasts an 11-2 record and ACC championship.

"We worked hard to be one of the best teams in America," KU linebacker Joe Mortensen said. "We're just glad to be in the BCS, to be in the Orange Bowl. It's one of the best bowls you can go to."

The Orange Bowl obviously thought highly of the Jayhawks, too. Kansas was picked as an at-large over Missouri, West Virginia, Hawaii and Arizona State.

After KU was taken, West Virginia was scooped up by the Fiesta Bowl, and Hawaii went to the Sugar Bowl. Missouri and Arizona State were left out of the BCS picture.

It was believed, if Kansas had been passed over by the Orange, that the Jayhawks would have been matched up against Big 12 colleague Oklahoma in the Fiesta Bowl.

"When you go to play a bowl game, you like to play against another conference," Mangino said. "It's conference pride : that's what makes the bowls a lot of fun. If it's the only way we'd play in a BCS bowl, then fine, we'll play Oklahoma."

It never came to that, though. Kansas instead will play a Virginia Tech team which beat Boston College, 30-16, in the ACC championship Saturday. The Hokies, led by a smothering defense, are No. 3 in the latest BCS standings. KU is No. 8.

Matchups, film breakdown and game preparation will come soon. But Sunday, KU's athletic department obviously was in a celebratory mood.

"I mean this very sincerely: We couldn't be any happier," Perkins said. "It's a great opportunity for the kids in our program."

Perkins was in constant contact with all of KU's bowl possibilities well into the night Saturday and all day Sunday. He figured mid-day Sunday that KU definitely was going to a BCS bowl and learned shortly before the 7 p.m. selection show that it was going to be in South Florida.

Orange Bowl CEO Eric Poms said the teams were picked with current matchups - and a tribute to the past - in mind.

"We're about to celebrate our 75th anniversary next year," Poms said. "A big part of our history is the old Big Eight Conference. : . Having an opportunity to pair (the ACC and Big 12) together was very appealing, and that was really the rationale in going in that direction. A national matchup with a Big 12 program going against a really strong ACC program."

Kansas will travel to Miami on Dec. 28 and spend a week in Florida preparing for its first Orange Bowl appearance since 1969. The game will kick off at 7 p.m. on Jan. 3 from Dolphin Stadium and be televised by Fox (Sunflower Broadband channel 4).

It's not the big enchilada - LSU and Ohio State are playing in the BCS National Championship Game on Jan. 7 - but it's one heck of a prize for a program nowhere near the Orange Bowl's radar just one year ago.

Perhaps, a dream ending to a dream season?

"You can dream, or you can pursue," Mangino said. "This is the product of our players and our coaches pursuing this goal and working hard to attain it.

"Maybe some guys dream about it. Maybe some days I did, too. I don't know. But dreaming is passive. We talk about pursuing. I think that's the reason why we're going to the Orange Bowl."


mojayhawk 13 years, 10 months ago

Great words, Coach! "You can dream, or you can pursue." "Dreaming is passive. We talk about pursuing."

These are words that project excellence in any area of life. How about these words for a Jayhawk motto?

"You can dream, or you can pursue."

Amen and Congratulations, Coach Mangino!

okjhok 13 years, 10 months ago

I don't think the Fiesta wanted a Big XII matchup either. I'll bet there was some dealing going on between the Fiesta and Orange, since VT-WVU was the obvious choice there. I'm glad the switch was made, 'cause OU is hot as a pistol right now. Don't want any part of that right now. That can wait until next year. I think KU is very fortunate to receive this bid, and I think they'll take full advantage of this program-changing opportunity.

Kevin Long 13 years, 10 months ago

I haven't seen VT that much this year. How good are they? I heard they have a good D, but that's it.

p.s. It's still pathetic that bball is the headline over this.

sevenyearhawk 13 years, 10 months ago

I am sorry to report that we have exhausted our supplies of Crimson Kool-Aid. :/

However ...

we expect shipments of ORANGE Kool-Aid to arrive later this week!!!

/that is all! :D

Matt Kenton 13 years, 10 months ago

In the video, Reesing credits Perkins and the athletic department.

I wonder what went on behind the scenes to get us in the Orange Bowl over Mizzou? Does he deserve credit?

DCJayhawk0208 13 years, 10 months ago

klong, I've seen a lot of VTech football this season--mainly when ABC played them instead of KU for the 2nd half of the season when we were on TV, and they do have a really good defense. They're playing a lot better than when they lost to LSU 48-7 in early September. They beat BC twice and U.Va. 31-21.

Our offense will be fine; it's just a matter of our defense keeping us in the game if our O doesn't click right away. By the 4th Quarter, I wouldn't want to be VTech.

Mangino_Maniac 13 years, 10 months ago

I'm a huge basketball fan too, but I agree that it is a shame the LJW did not make this the headline news on the website... this FOOTBALL news is huge!!! Very happy for Coach Mangino, his staff and of course our awesome team!!!

patton6 13 years, 10 months ago

DC - they lost to BC in Blacksburg before beating them in the ACC championship.

That said, as always they have a good defense and special teams, but nothing impenetrable. As for their offense, it's pretty weird with the 2 QB system of Gelnnon and Taylor, but nothing too dynamic.

Jayhawks will have to bring their 'A' game, but it's a very winnable matchup.

Studogg 13 years, 10 months ago

Yeah, I like this matchup. It's a chance to redeem ourselves against probably the best defense we will have seen this year. Misery's D showed up against us, but VTs is even better. That first BC/VT game was played in horrible weather, wasn't it? I don't think you can really judge a team on their performance in games like that. That vaunted defense did give up two touchdowns in like that last 2 minutes of that game, though. Again, like the matchup, love the Jayhawks, love Misery getting left out, and ROCK CHALK JAYHAWK!!

Brad Watson 13 years, 10 months ago

if you guys dont destroy va get out there and practice more joking around......only a victory in miami is get to work....don't be satisfied with the not..we love you guys...but if this truly is a new culture you are creating..don't come home with out the trophy.

Blake Post 13 years, 10 months ago

How sweet it is. Oh yes indeed, oranges taste most sweet. Mandarin especially...sounds like Mangino.
Cotton tends to get stuck in your teeth. Will focus on true blue positives, but have to say once: Couldn't happen to a stankier, nastier set of no class, unsportsmanlike, bum fans, those MUdpackers! I heard a ton of garbage during and after our game. Now I hear cursing, crying, whining out of the east, even wringing of hands and gnaching of teeth. Real tune-changer when it comes back around. I'll keep the oranges. They can have the (sour) grapes. Maybe they could rename it the sour grape bowl for ol' Misery.

Chris Kurtz 13 years, 10 months ago

I would much rather play Virginia Tech than Arkansas. I loave how MU got screwed. Awesome.

Life is unfair MU fans and I offer this advice: when life throws you oranges, make orange juice!

speedy 13 years, 10 months ago

I told you it would be ohio and someone else. how can a 2 loss team be rated higher than a 12-o or 11-1? go ku beat w.v. tec. down with the bcs

Kenny George 13 years, 10 months ago

How does "The Ohio State " with an 11-1 record and a schedule as weak as ours and a loss to Illinois at home play for the national title?

We are as qualified as "The Ohio State" to play for the national title.

The BCS is a JOKE...........

jayhawkr34 13 years, 10 months ago

first, the orange bowl is awesome, congrats coach and kids. second, almost, i say almost as sweet as the orange bolw invite, is fizzou getting punked twice in one weekend. and to hear and read all about they just had a bad game, but when it came to beating us they claimed the "better team" bs.

Brad Watson 13 years, 10 months ago

all the missouri had to do was win...they were stomped...thats life...its all or nothing...enjoy dallas and a coachless arkansas team....if they lose that....well...... they will have a long... long... winter

fivemog 13 years, 10 months ago

Orange Juice has never tasted so sweet!

Joshua Hann 13 years, 10 months ago

I just love how Missouri got screwed. I love it. Shows how important that win really was against us. Looks like we get the last laugh....again!

jayhawkr34 13 years, 10 months ago

that high pitched sqeel we keep hearing froom the east is chasee and the kittys crying and whining, sooooo funny

Ted Toulouse 13 years, 10 months ago

We definitely have to come out of the locker room in the first half on fire. no more stars in the eyes, no more big-stage jitters. We deserve to be here boys, let's play like it!

Rock Chalk Jayhawk Muck Fizzou! Cry tiggers, Cry!

Ted Toulouse 13 years, 10 months ago

jayhawkr - Chase was definitely whinny and pissy during the second half of the Big12 championship. Mizzou looked very one dimensional. Again, we need to come out smoking and get the total offense established. Seems like we come out of the gate trying to fire it downfield. Then we settle in to the running game, get the lead and play with more confidence. Game plan boys, game plan.

jayhawk02 13 years, 10 months ago

Some of the MUdpackers on tigerboard were trying to console themselves last night by saying they would rather have beaten KU than beat OU and go to the NCS game. Are you kidding me? What a bunch of losers. It really is true, that their whole season hinders on how they fare against KU.

jayhawk02 13 years, 10 months ago

They were also saying Mizzou should leave the Big 12 and join the Big 10. Reminds me of the local kid who would donate the ball to play a game with, but after getting beat, would take his ball and quit. Crybabies.

100 13 years, 10 months ago

MU didn't get screwed. The networks are going with "a story". Don't be fooled. Anyone truly researching the MU-KU game will realize three things (besides the fact that many of our key players were injured). First, unlike all the other schools across the US, KU hadn't played a bad half of football all year. Until MU. That night at Arrowhead KU played the worst half they've played in a decade. And we still almost won that game in the end. Secondly, everybody knows what happens if the pregame preparation is thrown off. Getting into a traffic jam and barely making kick-off while MU had been there for 2 hours getting into game mode didn't bode well for KU in the first half. Lastly, and most importantly, MU was STOMPED by OU by 3 touchdowns. Three touchdowns. How in the world do you advertise THAT game to the nation -- "MU, a highly inconsistent team, who was drilled JUST LAST NIGHT by OU, will play an excellent team, VT, for a possibility of ending up number 3 in the nation..." So don't buy the hype. MU wasn't screwed. KU earned this bid.

madmangine 13 years, 10 months ago


seattlehawk_78 13 years, 10 months ago

The BCS was devised to determine a NC game and not line up the remaining 8 teams accordingly, otherwise 3 plays 4, 5 plays 6 and so on. After the first two teams are determined it is at the bowl's discretion to decide who they want. Mizzou got hosed (ask me if I care) but we can't expect fairness from a system that is inherently flawed. I think a number of teams have a legitimate complaint about being left out of the title game. I don't include KU in that group but if you can make an argument for Ohio State then the same can be made for us. They have the name recognition and they lost earlier in the season which is why Mizzou got left out. Not only did they lose their last game of the season, they lost it in grand fashion.

JBurtin 13 years, 10 months ago

I think it comes down to three things

1) If they can justify Ohio State playing in a national title game after losing their last game of the season, how could they justify KU not getting a BCS bid in the same situation.

2) Similarly, if they can justify Hawaii getting a BCS berth with an absolutely pathetic schedule, then how could you justify not letting KU in. KU would have gone undefeated easily in their schedule, and won the games much more impressively.

3) Human interest. Missouri was supposed to be a pretty good team this year and one of the front runners to win the north. They accomplished the feat, then went and showed the nation that the south was still the superior half of the conference anyway. KU was completely written off before the season ever started. The supposed underdog finding a way to win against all odds is much more interesting than a team that was supposed to be pretty good (not great) and was pretty good (not great). More people are going to tune in to see the underdog Jayhawks to see if their loss to Missouri was just a fluke.

Rick Arnoldy 13 years, 10 months ago

Illinois wasn't OSU's last game. They went out and beat Michigan in "winner takes all" finale. But they still lost to an unranked team at home and didn't look good doing it.

jayhawkinATL 13 years, 10 months ago

Two teams I don't want any part of right now:

OU and Arkansas

We definitely have a better shot at beating VT than OU.

troutsee 13 years, 10 months ago

100--agree totally

JBurtin--agree with you point 3. Excellent.

MadMangine--right on!

Now, let's everyone get down to Miami and cheer on this remarkable team of ours.

Basketball will just have to wait until 1-4. Football season is still on in Lawrence!! Hear us LJW? Making the Orange Bowl is BIG NEWS! WORTHY OF HEADLINES, DON'T YOU THINK?

jhawkshocker 13 years, 10 months ago

Omaha KU.......yes, the redneck bowl........but even better as someone else stated on another post...... "The Inbreed Bowl" I took a big bag of oranges to work Mon, and a bag of cotton balls.......I had so much fun

RckChalkJeff 13 years, 10 months ago

Orange Bowl is worthy of headlines. It should be the Front story today.

Why does that mean we have to ignore Basketaball until the 4th of Jan? You realize they will play in 6 games between now and then. One being Depaul, who we owe a beating from last year, and another being Georgia Tech in ATLANTA. Kinda a big game?

Im all for the Fotball team kicking ass in the Orange bowl, but the fact of the matter is, its both football and basketball seasons. I would hope that on days when the basketball team plays, we still see Articles related to that...not the 1000th orange bowl article.

CaramelMacchMan 13 years, 10 months ago

Good thinking KuMatt2001.....

I think Lew prolly convinced those committee members that KU has more Fans than MU all over the country thus KU might give more attendence than MU...

I think that prolly played bigger role in selection of KU over MU.

troutsee 13 years, 10 months ago

Jeff... I meant for me. Sorry, I'm a football nut. I have season tickets to BB but FB is my first love. I hope the BB team gets full support of the fans.

madmangine 13 years, 10 months ago

Yes, underachieve. In my fury I slipped. This is neither a football or basketball school. ITS KANSAS, and it is completely insane that this morning, on this site, there wasn't a big ass orange the size of the entire page up. All I want is one, huge orange.

Love to all

(I'm not trying to take away anyones precious "hee hee" basketball team.

CaramelMacchMan 13 years, 10 months ago


All i wanted was a huge orange on the first page.... I can do better job than KUsports crew...

Brad Watson 13 years, 10 months ago


DallasHawk 13 years, 10 months ago

It was the best weekend ever. k-suck is home for the holidays and mu got the shaft. What a great time to be a Jayhawk!

OmahaKUAlum 13 years, 10 months ago

Did anyone else think when they saw the MU/Arkansas match-up: "The Redneck Bowl"? My husband and I did! :)

I'm so thrilled for this team to be rewarded with a BCS bowl. I agree with others, it's unfair that Ohio State, with the same record and the same (or worse) strength of schedule as KU, is in the title game. It goes to show you the bias that is still out there and probably always will be out there. Ohio State is in the title game because of their name and their name only. We are the only one-loss team to lose to a top 10 BCS team this year. However, I am so proud of this team for absolutely overachieving all year! Let's finish out this great season with a win! Rock Chalk!

goldlighting 13 years, 10 months ago

Those idiots on the MU/Tiger chat forum still cant seem to understand or comprehend the agreement with the cotton bowl and BCS officials. 1st place big 12 goes to BCS, 2nd place big 12 goes to cotton, they think it is all a big conspiracy when in reality it is all legal ink. You have to feel for them (not really), they are even reaching out worldwide in their desperate attempt to feel superior.

13 years, 10 months ago


Great job at work!! That would have been funny if you had placed a cotton ball on each of the MU fans' desks, and an orange on each of the KU fans' desks :)

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